“Life is not meant to be foretold. It is meant to be lived.” -The Little Light by Dipa Sanatani
Astrology has always been a mystery to mankind and while some try to explain (and sometimes deny) it with the concept of science, some use it to read their characters to predict the future, and some even try to fool people with its unethical use. And then there are many others like author Dipa Sanatani who tries to explore the vast subject of astrology through the realm of human experience.
Welcome to another exclusive interview conducted with author Dipa Sanatani on the topic of astrology that forms one of the key themes of her debut novel “The Little Light” where she talks about her journey with astrology and her views on the subject. Resorting to anecdotes from her own life, Dipa Sanatani shares how she had always been fascinated by the vastness of the universe ever since her childhood, how curiosity drove her into the mysterious world of astrology and how she discovered that natal charts can determine a person’s inherent character. And then there are some questions left to be answered in the sequel when the Little Light will be born to live its life on planet Earth.
Here is what author Dipa Sanatani speaks about “Astrology, Science and the Human Experience”.
“The stars are a map – and they guide us. They have lots of wisdom to offer.”
Q. What is the exact meaning of astrology?
A: As a definition, astrology is the study of the movements and relative positions of celestial bodies interpreted as having an influence on human affairs and the natural world.
Personally, I think there is no ‘exact meaning’ as the application and interpretation of astrology varies across culture and ages. Speak to a Vedic Astrologer and you’ll get a very different perspective to a Western Astrologer.
In the context of my book The Little Light, astrology is a collection of myths that offer valuable insight about the human experience.
Q. Tell us about your journey with astrology.
A: I can still remember opening an encyclopedia for the first time in kindergarten and seeing a depiction of the solar system. I was filled with an indescribable sense of wonder at the vastness of the universe and our place in it. It’s scary for some people to realise how small we are all in the large scheme of things.
As for me, I felt like a microcosm in a great macrocosm. Like it was a part of me and I was a part of it.
When I was a kid, I wanted to be an astronaut. Even today, I love visiting planetariums and observatories. It reminds me that the world is a vast and glorious place full of undiscovered mysteries.
Q. How did you gain such a vast knowledge on astrology?
A: Ahh… to be honest, I was a cynic for a long time. Growing up, I had a hard time with the way that astrologers would make these ‘predictions’ about the future. It negated all sense of free will and I didn’t find their advice helpful. And don’t even get me started on all these ‘remedies’.
Ten years ago, I met an astrologer who did a reading that blew my mind. How could this person who didn’t know me at all read my life like I was some kind of open book?
Infuriated, annoyed and deeply curious, I dived into the topic hoping to decipher its mysteries. I studied both Western and Vedic astrology. I read natal charts for friends for free. Over time, it started to make more sense to me.
The stars are a map – and they guide us. They have lots of wisdom to offer. We just have to listen… and then be prepared to take responsibility for our own decisions.
Q. What made you choose astrology as one of the theme of the book?
A: The Nine Great Celestial Beings – The Sun, Moon, Mercury, Mars, Venus, Jupiter, Saturn, Rahu and Ketu. They’ve been gazing down at mankind since time as we know it began. I’m sure they’d have great stories to tell about the history of the earth. It was with this premise in mind that I penned down The Little Light.
“Sometimes the greater the destiny, the greater the amount of pain.” -The Little Light by Dipa Sanatani
Q. Is it true that a person’s inherent characteristics depends on the position of the celestial bodies?
A: In an earlier interview on the publishing business, I spoke about how my great-grandfather Mancharram Nagindas has been one of the greatest influences in my life – especially when it comes to career and business. A lot of people have told me that he and I are very similar. In my mind, it had always come down to genetics and upbringing. After all, I was very close to him growing up.
What other logical explanation could there be?
It took me decades to realise that there’s a lot more to it than that.
In 2019, I returned to Singapore after 12 years abroad. I started digging up my family history. One thing led to another and I managed to get hold of my great-grandfather’s birth date. He passed away some twenty years ago, but I got curious and decided to take a look at his natal chart.
What I saw shocked me to my very core. We were born some 80 years apart, but our natal charts were almost identical. By this point I’d done hundreds and hundreds of natal chart readings and had never seen anything like it…
Genetics? Nature? Nurture? Or was it all mapped out in the stars well before either of us were born?
To be honest, one can never know.
Q. Astrology is often seen in total opposition to science. What’re your thoughts on that?
A: Your question made me smile. This is a conundrum that I explored with the character of Mercury in The Little Light. He strongly believes that the world can be understood through facts, logic and reasoning. And whilst those gifts have their uses, they’re ultimately limited when trying to understand the human experience with all its depth and complexity.
Science is the systematic study of the structure and behaviour of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment.
Astrology and science cannot be opposite because they don’t have the same purpose, uses or functions.
“We all have our destiny in this universe, even the Celestial Beings.” -The Little Light by Dipa Sanatani
Q. People tend to have a lot of misconceptions when it comes to the subject of astrology. Can you help break at least one of them?
A: Charlatan astrologers are a dime a dozen. Unfortunately, they charge significant sums of money for readings and remedies that neither work nor make sense. As a general rule, I never follow anyone’s advice unless it resonates with me or is in line with my values system.
If you’re going to see an astrologer, a lot of it depends on the knowledge and skill of the astrologer. There are many different schools of thought and calculation systems – Vedic, Western, Chinese, Mayan… so on and so forth. And even within Vedic astrology, there are a few different ways to calculate the birth chart.
That whole explanation to say… the interpretations of the birth chart can vary greatly depending on which system the astrologer follows… and their personal expertise.
Q. In your book, the Little Light is enlightened with the words that “Life is not meant to be foretold. Life is meant to be lived.” But don’t you think making of the horoscope to predict the future contradicts that concept?
A: Many prophesies and predictions are made about The Little Light’s life before its birth on planet earth. Will it come true? Will it be as it was written? These are questions that I will answer as The Little Light emerges from the Cosmic Womb and lives out its life on planet earth.
If you want to more about The Little Light’s life once it’s born… stay turned 🙂
“The Nine Great Celestial Beings have great stories to tell about the history of the earth.”
We wish Dipa Sanatani all the best for her novel “The Little Light” and for all her future books that would dive deeper into the world of astrology to explore its mysteries, delve into the uncertainties and discover the answers to the questions left unanswered.
“The world is a vast and glorious place full of undiscovered mysteries.” -The Little Light by Dipa Sanatani
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About the Author:
Hailing from the city of joy, Kolkata, Sanchari Das is currently pursuing her masters in English just for the love of the subject after successfully completing her creative writing course and also doing a job as a part-time content writer. She has contributed to multiple anthologies besides publishing her book of poetry, “Leisure“, along with her debut novel, “Not Just a Love Story“. She aspires to become a great author someday and inspire millions of readers through her writing. Presently, she is a part of a writing community named “Scribbled Feels”. She loves writing articles, book reviews, travelogues and interviews on her blog. Apart from reading and writing, she also loves to paint, dance and travel, and feels an intimate connection with music.